JaneB

Watford 1 Chelsea 2

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55 minutes ago, Ibn Battuta said:

Watford were ready to rough us up. This was the classic "can they do it on a  cold wednesday night at Stoke" type of game. I was hoping for more agression but it seems that both TT and the team were expecting a very different game. They really kicked us up and down the pitch.

Yes and no.  They certainly competed hard and 18-16 foul count implies we competed head to head with them.

On the other hand I couldn't see much dirty in there - at least not intentionally dirty.  There was some loss of control but it was all aimed at winning the ball not kicking the man.

Physioroom has them with 8 injuries and us with 5, but we have a bigger squad and are more likely to rest marginal cases.
So my guess is that their physical style is causing them as many injury problems as it causes opponents and week in week out that will damage them.

Yesterday their GK2 easily reached both shots without saving them.

 

1 hour ago, paulw66 said:

In the last 3 or 4 weeks, we have been without, for various reasons and different lengths of time: James, Chilwell, Kante, Kovacic, Mount, Havertz, Lukaku, Werner, Pulisic and now Chalobah

Just as well we have a big squad. 

Pulisic has (honestly) appeared in 8 out of 8 games in the past month.  Jorginho was on the bench and available and has started every other game in the past month for us and Italy.
James has been available for every game for 2 months until yesterday, and since he trained he might well have been available if this were a bigger game.

From your list we were missing 3 players yesterday (+ James).   From a squad of 26.

And the club is clearly giving everyone extra time to recover to make sure they are all back to full fitness and healthy for the big push at the end of the season.
Part of that means much heavier and therefore longer recovery training that would happen in say March.

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3 hours ago, Blue Rod said:

That was poor. If Burnley and ManUtd hadn't already happened, and in pretty close succession, I would be less worried.

I think our injuries are caused by our form. If you get out of the block and take control of the match, you can see it off without breaking a sweat, never mind bone. After all, this was Watford, w a d r. Their only remarkable performance was against a team who couldn't wait to get their manager sacked. 

Ignore the holier than thou fans, Tuchel has got some sorting out to do,  and now is the time. I just don't see this team making up a 6 point deficit against ManCity or Liverpool once that has developed. 

I don't expect us to turn up tomorrow as a different team, style and performance-wise . But a certain direction of travel (obviously not south) would do nicely.

Yes we were poor last night at times, but we also scored two excellent goals - they weren't flukes, deflections or lucky penalties, but well crafted chances superbly finished - and created other chances, too. Once we changed to 3-5-2 we were pretty much in control. Maybe we should have started that way, given we were without Kanté, Jorginho and Kovacic.

As for the United game, we were by far the better side and but for one brain-fart moment by one of the best players we have and some poor finishing we would have won the game comfortably. We did not play poorly against United, and to suggest we are in some sort of slump only goes to underline how depressingly negative a mindset you have.

Tuchel said last night that we stole 3 points. Did we, though? We weren't great, but in spite of everything we carried on trying to win the game, and did so. In past seasons, that's a game we would have lost. People would have complained of a lack of leadership, of spineless players not fit to wear the blue shirt. You know what? In spite of being off the boil, they kept going and won. Stop complaining!

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2 minutes ago, Bob Singleton said:

Yes we were poor last night at times, but we also scored two excellent goals - they weren't flukes, deflections or lucky penalties, but well crafted chances superbly finished - and created other chances, too. Once we changed to 3-5-2 we were pretty much in control. Maybe we should have started that way, given we were without Kanté, Jorginho and Kovacic.

I pretty much agree in general, but just 2 picky points.
The goals we scored would have been saved by a better keeper, especially Ziyech's which went through the keepers hands while he was just standing on his feet.

The formation for H2 was more aggressive than 352 suggests.  Both WBs stayed high, and Mount & RLC/Ziyech were pushed up just behind the twin strikers with really just Chalobah/RLC in midfield.  If anything it was a more aggressive formation than H1 albeit with some flexibility.  The real difference is that Chalobah never took risks with the ball so Watford soon dropped off.

7 minutes ago, Bob Singleton said:

Tuchel said last night that we stole 3 points.   Did we, though? 

I think so, yes.   Or at least it was better finishing and much better goalkeeping that won it despite poor general play.

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Jasonb   
1 hour ago, bert19 said:

If only Pulisic had shown the same awareness and played Havertz in a second or two earlier to match his clever run for the offside goal eh? 2-0 at that point would have made our night A LOT easier.  Injuries or not, Pulisic seriously needs to buck his ideas up sometimes, his eyes are on the floor when he has great chances to play others in quickly. Frustrating. 

Yes that was a good chance and having missed that early pass why not hang on to it giving Havertz time to adjust.

I feel Pulisic is better in a front two rather than a front three, still he did ok as a makeshift RWB.

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1 hour ago, bert19 said:

If only Pulisic had shown the same awareness and played Havertz in a second or two earlier to match his clever run for the offside goal eh? 2-0 at that point would have made our night A LOT easier.  Injuries or not, Pulisic seriously needs to buck his ideas up sometimes, his eyes are on the floor when he has great chances to play others in quickly. Frustrating. 

Maybe, but I thought it was a really crap run by Havertz  (who is normally so intelligent).  I don't think he gave a pass opportunity until after he went offside.

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Blue Rod   
2 hours ago, Bob Singleton said:

Yes we were poor last night at times, but we also scored two excellent goals - they weren't flukes, deflections or lucky penalties, but well crafted chances superbly finished - and created other chances, too. Once we changed to 3-5-2 we were pretty much in control. Maybe we should have started that way, given we were without Kanté, Jorginho and Kovacic.

As for the United game, we were by far the better side and but for one brain-fart moment by one of the best players we have and some poor finishing we would have won the game comfortably. We did not play poorly against United, and to suggest we are in some sort of slump only goes to underline how depressingly negative a mindset you have.

Tuchel said last night that we stole 3 points. Did we, though? We weren't great, but in spite of everything we carried on trying to win the game, and did so. In past seasons, that's a game we would have lost. People would have complained of a lack of leadership, of spineless players not fit to wear the blue shirt. You know what? In spite of being off the boil, they kept going and won. Stop complaining!

I respect your positivity. Mine isn't a complaint, just an opinion on how well we are doing.

We're in a competition for the title. In a single  match where our rivals have scored 2, 3 or 4 goals, they would have had several misses. In fact some of Salah's misses would shame Werner. But they just create more and score more. We seem to be counting our misses as if they were some goals denied us by some unseen forces. 

I'm not saying that these teams are better than us. I'm just saying that we should face the competition and stop making all these little excuses. Misses aside, I dont think that we are creating anywhere as many clear chances as our rivals, or in fact any of our last PL winning teams. That is an important context. 

If we are 60 min into the game and toiling against some relegation strugglers, we must find the solution to score and win. That is all that matters, as far as I am concerned. If we can't,  then it's a bad performance. The misses, near misses and all that bad luck are for the birds.

I was actually relieved to hear Thomas Tuchel sound so candid in his PMI.

Edited by Blue Rod

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6 hours ago, Blue Rod said:

The way Watford exploded off the block signalled their intentions. They must have studied our often relaxed horizontal approach.

Also, if I was managing a game at home against a Chelsea side that starts with Azpil/ Alonso as wingbacks and a middle duo of Saul/RLC, I will press high early and often and gamble that they won't be able to retain possession as usual due to absence of Chilwell/James and Jorginho/Kante/Kovacic. I expect more of the same at West Ham on Saturday even with the possibility of Jorginho back due to the inclusion of Azpil/Alonso as wingbacks who aren't the best skilled in tight spaces while under pressure.

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5 hours ago, Bison said:

(Nasty injury for Osimhen by the way, scary stuff)

Osimhen has been very unlucky with injuries. Massive loss for Napoli and Nigeria for sure. With respect to Nigeria, he almost single handedly willed a very poorly performing Super Eagles to the last (playoffs) phase of qualifying set for March next year (home & away similar to Europe) - otherwise, definitely out for the nations cup.

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3 hours ago, bert19 said:

If only Pulisic had shown the same awareness and played Havertz in a second or two earlier to match his clever run for the offside goal eh? 2-0 at that point would have made our night A LOT easier.  Injuries or not, Pulisic seriously needs to buck his ideas up sometimes, his eyes are on the floor when he has great chances to play others in quickly. Frustrating. 

Pullisic, God bless his heart because I love the fella, has a knack for indecision or at times playing with his head down at vital moments. Contrast with say, CHO or Mount who usually look to play in the early 'simple' pass when available. I won't be too hard on Pulisic because his way of playing favors opportunity to create a goal from nothing (we need that) but needs to know when simple is better.

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nearly everyone on here was worried before kick off about the pairing of RLC and Saul, yet TT didn't see any problem.

Surely he now sees Saul is not cut out for this league, cut his loan and send him on his way.

could we not have played Christenen in midfield alongside RLC? (He's played there for Denmark)also if Jorginho wasn't fit why was he on the bench

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